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Steeping Instructions for Pre-Bagged or Loose Leaf Chamomile Tea
The blossoms of the chamomile plant (Matricaria recutita) have been used by ancient Egyptians for over 3,000 years for their pleasantly calming, comforting, and anti-inflammatory properties. Chamomile has a sweet, mild taste with hints of apple and is caffeine free. With the wide variety of exotic tea blends on supermarket shelves today, let's get back to basics on how to easily prepare a cup of chamomile tea.
What You'll Need
- kettle, stainless steel or ceramic (what you'll boil your water in)
- teapot or mug with a lid (what you'll steep your tea in, which is not your kettle)
- 1 teaspoon of dried chamomile flowers (about 1 gram)
- Infusion device (like a tea ball, heat seal tea bag, piece of cheesecloth and string, or steep loose and use a strainer after steeping)
- 8 ounces of filtered water and hot water from the tap
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- Fill the teapot or mug you'll be steeping in with hot tap water to warm the container.
- Fill your infusion device with the chamomile. If steeping without a device (called "loose leaf"), wait until Step 4 to add your chamomile.
- Heat 6–8 ounces of filtered water in your kettle on your stove to first boil (when the water just begins to form small bubbles). Remove from heat.
- Empty your teapot or mug of the tap water and add the chamomile to this container. Pour water from the kettle over the chamomile and cover. This helps to fully release the oils and matricin from the flower, enhancing the taste and medicinal components of your cup of tea.
- Steep (let sit) for about 5 minutes. In the future, you can adjust the amount of chamomile you use and steep time to taste, but steeping too long may result in a more bitter flavor.
- Uncover and remove your infusion device from your tea pot or mug. If you steeped loose leaf, pour the steeped tea through a strainer into a second mug.
Your chamomile tea is ready to enjoy. You may add milk, honey, or sweetener to taste, though doing so may alter the natural taste and medicinal benefits of your chamomile tea. I prefer this tea with nothing added.